BOSTON (CBS) — It certainly feels like the Celtics and Marcus Smart are getting close to a new contract.

After Wednesday’s news that the two sides are “seriously engaged in contract talks,” Danny Ainge, Smart and Smart’s agent, Happy Walters, are reportedly meeting on Thursday.

It’s hard to imagine anyone having a serious talk with someone named Happy Walters, but it sounds like the long stalemate between Smart and the Celtics will soon be over. Smart, a restricted free agent, had hopes of landing a big money contract this summer, but did not received any offer sheets from other teams. Before Wednesday, the Celtics (who had the ability to match any offer sheet Smart received) had not discussed a new deal with Smart since the start of free agency on July 1.

Though there are no competing offers, the C’s are reportedly ready to offer Smart a four-year deal in the $46-$52 million range according to several reports, which would be a nice bump in pay for their best defensive player. Despite his offensive struggles, Smart is an integral part of Boston’s success thanks to his frustrating defense and bulldog mentality.


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